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Posted on: April 2, 2019

Arapahoe County approves new regulations for beekeeping and backyard chickens

Chicken and Bees

LITTLETON, CO – The Arapahoe County Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved new regulations to allow backyard bee and chicken keeping in unincorporated residential areas effective April 30, 2019. The new rules are a result of a two-year, community-driven process to balance the needs and concerns of residents. 

No special licenses are required for backyard chickens or beekeeping. Residents must adhere to the adopted regulations and may need a building permit for certain improvements. Arapahoe County’s CSU Extension Program offers a variety of free resources for individuals seeking to start backyard operations. 

Under the new regulations, residents on lot sizes of  1-acre or less can have two to eight beehive boxes, provided owners adhere to design and setback standards. Single family residential units also can have up to four hens in coops that meet design and setback standards. Owners must keep chickens in coops overnight, keep them on their property at all times, and control dust, debris and noise. 

Homeowner associations have the ability to implement more restrictive policies than the county. Some municipalities already allow bees and chickens as well. 

Residents can confirm whether they live in unicorporated Arapahoe County by checking ArapaMap. The County’s Zoning and Animal Services Division is responsible for ensuring code compliance and pursuing enforcement in response to complaints. Residents can call 720-874-6711 or submit request online

Residents can review specific regulations and additional resources online at www.arapahoegov.com/beeschickens.  


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